Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Swine Flu

During the last two weeks, the Mexican government has developed strict measures over its population in order to avoid the proliferation of the swine flu. As a news reporter from the New York Times says, “the government-decreed restrictions on public activities apply all over Mexico…the restrictions are part of the government’s effort to discourage people from gathering in large groups and transmitting the newly discovered flu strain, H1N1” (Rohter 2009). Mexican authorities are using mass media to spread the message that people must stay in home and change hygiene and physical contact habits. Foucault’s microphysics of power factors can be found in the Mexican situation. The Mexican government has used experts’ knowledge, has objective the flu epidemic, and has used mass media to ‘educate’ about the swine flu. The Mexican population has paid attention and internalized this message and has restricted its activity. Social control in Mexico, as a consequence of the swine flu, is an example of the discipline that can be reached in a population by using scientific reasons through the mass media.

Do you consider that Foucault’s theory could be applied to the Mexican situation?


  1. I do believe that Faucault's theory could be applied to the "mexican" swine flu situation because Mexico does indeed use relationships between power, knowledge, and discourse to exert social control. I have heard the comercials and I think there a little redundant but their purpose is educate the people about a health problem that is more serious in Mexico than it is here in the U.S.

  2. I do believe that the theory can be used to explain the situation in Mexico. They have resorted to social control in order to educate their population as well as to prevent the disease from spreading. I do not know if their efforts have succeeded for just the previous weekend they allowed for a massive soccer game to take place in Juarez. It was supposed be played with no audience but they did. Therefore I believe the theory can be used to explain their efforts but they haven't received the desired outcome.